EU migrant crisis: EU interior ministers to meet to discuss binding quotas

James Nickerson
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Ministers are hoping to reach consensus (Source: Getty)

European ministers will meet later today to attempt to come to a decision on how to relocate 120,000 asylum seekers who are already in Europe.

The meeting in Brussels later today is an attempt to reach a consensus ahead of a meeting tomorrow of European leaders.

Read more: The European Parliament has approved a relocation plan for 120,000 refugees

The UK will not take part as it has chosen to opt-out. However, Ireland and Denmark, the other two countries who could opt-out have decided to take part.

An agreement is expected to be difficult to reach as a group of central European states is resisting pushes for countries to accept mandatory quotas. Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and the Czech Republic oppose the quotas.

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The quotas have been supported by the German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and requested by European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.

Yet the arrival of tens of thousands numbers of migrants have caused divisions in the EU, and while ministers could push through a deal via a majority vote, ministers want to reach a compromise.

Migrants are arriving in Greece and moving on to other countries, including Hungary, where a wire fence was put up along the Serbian border and where tear gas was reportedly used on migrants last week.

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